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Dooreh Book Club 2021 Schedule

2021 Dooreh Book Selection and Discussion Dates

2021 Dooreh Book Selection and Discussion Dates

All discussions are conducted on Zoom and led by Jim Goode and Jackie Spurlock.

  • January 13 – Limbert, John (RPCV Sanandaj, 1964-66) and Marc Grossman. Believers: Love and Death in Tehran. (2020) A riveting thriller, Believers explores forty years of revolutionary Iran's tensions with the United States. The story the authors have created is filled with rich characters and history and takes readers right up to the dangers of an open conflict today. It is tremendously relevant to our times.
  • March 10 – Harris, Kevan. A Social Revolution: Politics and the Welfare State in Iran. (2017) For decades, political observers and pundits have characterized the Islamic Republic of Iran as an ideologically rigid state on the verge of collapse, exclusively connected to a narrow social base. Based on extensive fieldwork in Iran, the author convincingly demonstrates how they are wrong.
  • May 12 – Maghbouleh, Neda. The Limits of Whiteness: Iranian Americans and the Everyday Politics of Race. (2017) A groundbreaking look at how Iranians and other Middle Eastern Americans move across the color line. By shadowing more than 80 young people, the author documents Iranian Americans' shifting racial status. She tells the compelling, often heartbreaking story of how a white American immigrant group can become brown and what such a transformation says about race in America.
  • July 14 – Briskin, Dennis (RPCV). The Face of Iran Before. (2020) The author has compiled here many of his favorite portrait photos taken when he served as a volunteer in Arak, 1967-1969. The book captures an Iran that in some ways no longer exists. Thus, it is a work of cultural anthropology as well as photography. $72 (or $10 pdf from author) AND Phinney, Alice Preston (RPCV). Yekke bude yekke na bude. (1975) In this brief memoir, Phinney provides a series of personal anecdotes about her life as a Peace Corps volunteer in Kerman (1965-1967). While in Iran, she had a wonderful, rewarding time. Readers of the book will feel they are sharing in her discoveries, too. PLEASE NOTE: These two works will be read together for a single discussion session.
  • September 8 – Bahrampour, Tara. To See and See Again. (1999) Tara's father, Essie Bahrampour, an American trained architect, worked as a field officer for Peace Corps Iran municipal public works volunteers--architects, city/urban planners, landscape architects in the 1970s. (His Peace Corps experience is intentionally not mentioned in the book.) Essie met Tara's mother while studying in America, and Tara grew up moving between their two worlds. Essie grew up the son of a feudal lord, and as an adult Tara returns to Iran to explore family ties. It's a beautifully written memoir of growing up in two cultures.  
  • November 10 – Azar, Shokoofeh. The Enlightenment of the Greengage Tree. (2020) An extraordinarily powerful and evocative literary novel set in Iran in the period immediately after the Islamic Revolution in 1979. Using the lyrical magic realism style of classical Persian storytelling, Azar draws the reader deep into the heart of a family caught in the maelstrom of post-revolutionary chaos and brutality.


All dates are Wednesdays, and the time is always 5:00pm Pacific (8:00pm Eastern). All living authors have agreed to join us for the discussion of their book.